Disposal trigger

Glossary topic: 

In an approved retention and disposal schedule, the event or action from which the disposal date is calculated (e.g. business action completed, completion of contract, end of financial year).

Commonly used disposal triggers include:

Trigger Meaning

Business action completed

The date the business, described in the record class, has come to an end (e.g. a case has been closed or a matter has been finalised).
(Note: An action does not include someone viewing a record).

Date of birth The date of birth of an individual, such as a child in care, an employee, a client or patient.
Disposal The date an asset (e.g. equipment, car, building or property) is disposed of through ownership transfer, decommissioning, destruction or demolition.
End of financial year In Australia, the end of the financial year is 30 June.


The date a policy/legal instrument (e.g. a contract, lease, mortgage, authorisation, licence or warranty) ceases to have effect.

For the life of the record For as long as the record that it is controlling exists. Usually only used as a disposal action for records which control other records (e.g. master control records, data quality and validation records)


Transfer to QSA after business action completed

Records with high or significant archival value, which have enduring value to the people and State of Queensland, and cannot be destroyed.

These records must be kept permanently and should be transferred to Queensland State Archives (QSA) after business action is completed.


Retain in agency

Records with a high or significant value to a specific agency but which are not of archival value to the people or State of Queensland.

These records should be kept permanently by the agency and not transferred to QSA.

Separation The date an employee leaves an agency through resignation, termination, redundancy or death.
Superseded The date of replacement with a new or different version (e.g. a new policy supersedes an older policy).


The date a policy/legal instrument (e.g. licences, authorisations or agreements) is cancelled, revoked or otherwise terminated because of breaches of conditions etc. Similar to expiry.

Source: Adapted from the Australasian Digital Recordkeeping Initiative (ADRI) Glossary of Disposal Triggers.

See also Disposal action, Retention period